Jewellery Metals for Your Lifestyle
There are many options to consider in the world of precious and non-precious metals, and it all comes down to what you love in terms of look—and what might make the most sense for you in terms of durability. There are other things to consider as well. For example, if your skin is very sensitive, Platinum might be the perfect choice for you since it’s hypo-allergenic. Here’s a little information to help you get started.
Gold, coveted for its lustre and beauty, is a traditional metal for engagement rings and wedding bands. Gold has the longest and most storied history of all the precious metals. Its purest form is 24K, which is relatively soft and malleable. There are various grades of gold purity, most commonly 10K, 14K, and 18K. It is alloyed with different metals to increase the durability. Gold comes in three colours: yellow, white, and rose.
Yellow gold is a soft natural colour and is often alloyed with copper and silver. Gold is timeless, elegant and the most popular metal for everyday wear.
White gold gives a modern look, and is often alloyed with silver, zinc or palladium. It is also often plated with a rhodium plating to give it the appearance of platinum. It does require re-plating from time to time.
Rose gold is made with similar properties, and is alloyed with copper to give it that rose colour. Rose gold engagement rings styles, either on their own or with white gold are a trending look today, especially with young brides-to-be!
Platinum is one of the most popular metals for engagement rings and wedding bands. It’s naturally white and will never fade or change colour. It is also durable and hypoallergenic. Although a heavier metal and the most expensive, Platinum will last forever and is the ultimate symbol of everlasting love!
From the same family of precious metals as platinum, palladium is strong and durable, but lighter than platinum – allowing bigger, bolder jewellery to be worn with ease. Palladium is naturally white and used at a very high purity, which makes it hypoallergenic.
Not usually used for engagement ring settings, sterling silver is primarily used for fashion jewellery and accessories. It tends to tarnish and scratch, which are two big reasons we don’t typically recommend it for holding a precious diamond or coloured gemstone for your engagement ring. However, it is a very affordable alternative to white gold or platinum.
Contemporary metals are widely used as a back-up band to the traditional Gold or Platinum wedding band.
Tungsten Carbide is a chemical compound created by combining equal parts of tungsten and carbon atoms. The chemical formula for Tungsten Carbide is represented by WC. Before being compressed into the shape of a wedding band, tungsten carbide is a fine grey powder. Once compressed, tungsten carbide is a tremendously heavy and hard metal. Its surface is extremely scratch resistant which makes it one of the most popular innovative metals available for men.
Titanium is a very light, lustrous metal with a grey colour. By the touch and feel, titanium seems like a very weak “plastic” like metal but actually has the highest strength-to-weight ratio of any metal. It is used in many fields such as aerospace, architecture and for medical purposes. Titanium is 100% hypoallergenic.
Black ceramic is very durable, hypoallergenic and can withstand heavy usage. A high gloss finish makes these rings highly resistant to scratching and tarnishing. Black ceramic is heavier than titanium but lighter than tungsten.
Stainless Steel is a metal that is easy to clean, highly durable and resistant to scratches and corrosion. It has a beautiful silvery-white colour and retains that shine and colour very well. It is most commonly used in men’s jewellery and watches.
Dark grey very dense and hypoallergenic metal. Tantalum acts like a precious metal in that finishes can be added or diamonds can be set. New to the jewellery world, the metal is often used in electronics and medical fields.